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Deschutes Beer Cheese Pairing at Tops Market

If you ask me, Deschutes is winning at Redding Beer Week… not that it’s a competition! (Whatever. Everything is. I’m winning at parenthesis right now.) Of the events I’ve attended this year, they’ve offered the widest range of beers, and have presented them in ways that inform and intrigue me. I come to Beer Week to expand my craft beer knowledge and tastes, not just to drink, and Deschutes has managed to do that.

8-27 Deschutes Cheese Pairing at Tops 3

 

First it was their tap takeover at Maxwell’s, then the cheese pairing at Top’s Market. Deschutes just gets me! Tops is a quirky market on the west edge of town, with a well stocked beer and wine selection and a small bar that regularly hosts samplings. (Tops is winning at grocery stuff.) Their Deschutes pairing featured four beers with four cheeses: Chainbreaker IPA with Cypress Grove chevre, Mirror Mirror with Maytag bleu, Black Butte Porter with Sierra Nevada jalapeno jack, and Fresh Squeezed IPA with Point Reyes bleu. (I’m winning at cheese spellings.) The Chainbreaker is an atypical IPA, with little to no hoppy bitterness and a touch of coriander; I didn’t love the chevre but I’m told it was an excellent pairing. The Porter with the jalapeno jack was a winning combination that I intend to repeat on a regular basis, but most of my interest was spent on the Mirror Mirror: it’s an oak aged barley wine and Tops was offering cold and room temperature options. I went with room temp, and I had a hard time getting around the raisin, but I’d like to revisit it cold, and without it being preceded by a Porter and IPA. (I’m losing at understanding barley wine.)

8-27 Deschutes Cheese Pairing at Tops 2
There were almost 20 Beer Weekers gathered around Tops’ tiny, grocery store bar, enjoying the refreshing, casual atmosphere. Things got a little cheesy, but I’m sure most people left with Deschutes in their bags. (Most bottles wins.)

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